Beauty is big business. Each year, Americans spend over $56 billion dollars in cosmetic sales, $45 billion on haircuts and hair care products and an additional $1.4 billion dollars on teeth whitening products. Despite Americans obsession with appearance, nearly 40% of Americans neglect their most beautiful feature, their smile. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), nearly 40 percent of adults in the U.S. fail to see the dentist on a regular basis; over 27 percent of adults have untreated cavities; and over 47 percent of adults over the age of 30 have periodontal disease. Yikes! Your smile is often the first thing people notice about you making it an important investment. However, your smile is more than white teeth and healthy gums; a healthy mouth affects a person's overall health and well-being. Plus investing in your dental health is one of the best values on the market. Brushing your teeth and visiting the dentist are a good place to start, plus there are simple thingsyou can do at home to keep your smile vibrant all year long. Brush More than Your Teeth: Brushing your teeth is important, but don't forget to also brush your gums and tongue. Bacteria get trapped on the bumps on your tongue. Food can also get stuck between your teeth and gums so don't forget to floss. Brushing your tongue also prevents bad breath. Skip The Sugar: You've probably heard that sugar rots your teeth, but decay isn't limited to candy bars. Foods like pasta, bread and even fruit that contain high amounts of sugar which can do serious damage to your teeth and gums. Beverages like wine and juice also contain high amounts of sugar. Change your toothbrush every 3 month: After intense usage, the bristles on your toothbrush get worn down or frayed and lose their effectiveness. You should also throw away your toothbrush after illness because bacteria get trapped on the bristles. Wear a Mouth Guard at Night: If you grind your teeth at night, you can be causing serious damages to your teeth. If you find yourself with headaches, facial pain, a sore jaw, neck or ear aches you may be unaware you are grinding your teeth. The good news is your friends at Dental Care of Mid-Florida can fit you for a night guard during your next visit.